TRIUMPH, the highest honour bestowed in Rome upon a victorious general (Lat. triumphus). It was only granted on certain conditions, relaxed in special cases. Only those who held the office of dictator, consul, or praetor were entitled to the dis tinction ; the war must have been brought to a definite con clusion, resulting in an extension of the boundaries of the state; the victory must have been gained over a foreign enemy. The power of granting a triumph rested with the senate. Special legislation was necessary to keep the general in possession of the imperium on his entry into the city. Without this, his command would expire and he would have no right to a triumph. He re mained outside the city limits until the ordinance was passed; Lucullus on his return from Asia waited outside Rome three years.
The triumph, a solemn procession, starting from the Campus Martius, passed through the city to the Capitol. The streets were adorned with garlands, and the procession was greeted with shouts of lo triumphe. At its head were the magistrates and senate, followed by trumpeters and then by the spoils, (arms, standards, statues, etc., representations of battles, and of the towns, etc., of the conquered country). Next came the victims destined for sacrifice, especially white oxen with gilded horns. They were followed by the prisoners kept to grace the triumph. The chariot of the victorious general (triumphator) was crowned with laurel and drawn by f our horses. The general was attired
like the Capitoline Jupiter in robes of purple and gold; in his right hand he held a laurel branch, in his left an ivory sceptre surmounted by an eagle. Above his head the golden crown of Jupiter was held by a slave, who reminded him in the midst of his glory that he was a mortal man. Last came the soldiers shouting lo triumphe. On reaching the temple of Jupiter on the Capitol, the general placed the laurel branch on the lap of the image of the god, and offered the thank-offerings. A feast of the magistrates and senate concluded the ceremony. Under the empire only the emperors celebrated a triumph, because the generals commanded under the auspices of the emperors as lieu tenants (legati) ; the only honour they received was the right of wearing the triumphal insignia (the robes of purple and gold and the wreath of bay leaves) on holidays. The last triumph recorded is that of Diocletian (A.D. 302). A naval triumph was sometimes allowed for victories at sea, the earliest being that celebrated by C. Duilius for his victory over the Carthaginians in 26o B.C.
See Marquardt, Romische Staatsverzvaltung (1884) ; Mommsen, Romisches Staatsrecht (1887) ; J. E. Sandys, Companion to Latin Studies (1921) .